How to write a statement of purpose for college admission

A SOP is a very important criterion for admission to universities abroad. The primary goal of writing a statement of purpose for college admission is to explain why the candidate is the best choice for the specific course and why the candidate is ideal for the particular course.  The making of a statement of purpose is very challenging for students since it plays a key role in admission. 

What is a statement of purpose?

A SOP, or statement of purpose, is a personal essay required by the majority of universities abroad during the admissions process. In this section, you will be required to explain yourself, your career path, interests, professional contributions, goals, and the driving force behind your decision to pursue a specific course and university. This is typically submitted as an essay, but certain universities may prefer to keep it question-based. It is the most important aspect of your application since it determines your admission to your preferred institution.

What is the prime goal of SOP?

Your application is graded by the Statement of Purpose (SOP). It aids the admissions committee in evaluating your outlook on life, your professional objectives, your beliefs, your subject knowledge, and your vision. Basically, a strong SOP gives universities a portrait of your overall personality. This is your opportunity to communicate to the committee why they should select you over the other applicants. With a strong statement of purpose, you can make up for an inadequate academic background by emphasizing your long-term ambitions. A well-written SOP also demonstrates how effectively you can communicate your ideas through writing.

How to write an SOP like a pro?

The strategy for creating a strong statement of purpose for students enrolling in undergraduate, graduate, or postgraduate courses is to stay focused throughout the process. An accurate SOP should always follow a sequential flow and address the students’ prior experience, current academic qualifications, and long-term goals. Students must keep this in mind when writing the SOP in order to separate each point into paragraphs that include all elements. While creating a SOP, they should clearly mention their objectives and intentions regarding their academic backgrounds and career path. However, there are some key points that you should include to create an appealing SOP, as mentioned below:

  • Your personal details
  • Your financial details
  • Academic background
  • Your published works
  • Your purpose of choosing the particular course
  • Current and future goals
  • Your interests and hobbies
  • Professional experience if any
  • Your submitted paper , if any
  • You can also include any outstanding elements that help your selection procedure.

Additionally, you have to mention all the elements in detail and should include all the points. Here are the major steps you should follow while writing a SOP.

1. Plan it well

Make an outline for your SOP and work from there. Sharing an anecdote that piqued your interest in your subject is an excellent way to start your introduction. Furthermore, the first sentence should be very impressive since the reader will instantly develop a negative or positive impression from the first sentence. Create pointers and categories, list your relevant accomplishments and expertise, and, most importantly, explain why you chose the course and the university. It’s better if you make a draft of what should be included and then write the final one. 

2. Narrate a perfect introduction

Ideally, applicants should begin with an enticing statement or feature about themselves, their status, or their interests that makes them appear engaging and competent. Students can begin with a phrase and then show how it applies to their specific situation. If students want to cite a well-known figure who made a significant statement, keep it brief, quote correctly, and make sure the connection to the perspective is clear. Create a mesmerizing, solid introduction of your own in the first paragraph. It will be the first thing the admissions committee reads, and students should be aware that first impressions are created instantly. Make sure the first sentence is very appealing, with no grammatical errors, humorous sentences, or spelling mistakes.

3. Word limit

  1. The statement of purpose should be one or two pages long, ideally 800-1000 words. Indeed, depending on university regulations, the length of this statement may vary. Some academic institutions have a predetermined length and structure for SOPs, which must be 500 words or less, and in some cases, 200 words. Most universities accept a basic length of 800-1000 words, which may be extended but should not exceed 1200 words in some cases.

    Students can generally write a short story about their lives, explaining how each incident shaped or molded their character. The most difficult challenge, however, arises when applicants must describe their SOP within the word limit set by some academic institutions.

4. Mention your education background and professional experience

This section is crucial for you as a potential student. Universities pay close attention to both your academic record and professional background. So it would be best if you highlighted your professional achievements. Do stress on the undergraduate, graduate, and high school education, and also mention the recent employment you’ve had. A statement of purpose should progress from a student’s past and present academic endeavors to their suggested pursuits and future employment in accordance with the methodology described above. When writing your SOP, keep technical terms to a minimum and use active voice. If there is a gap year or an academic issue, address it in a positive way.

5. Mention the intentions for opting particular course

Student should be able to explain why he/she opted that particular course. They should highlight how this course is going to help them chase their dreams and succeed in the future. They should also mention what they will be able to do during the course period and the experience they will get from doing the particular course at the particular campus.

6. Explain Your Career Plans

  1.  It is the most important part of the SOP. Students should spell out both their immediate and long-term goals. In an ideal world, students’ main goal would be to land a job as soon as they complete the program. Students should therefore be able to list a few businesses and the position they envision for themselves. They should also be aware of what job they are planning to take up in the future.

    The long-term objectives are the next section, where students should outline where they see themselves in 15 years. Additionally, it might refer to their desire to expand the current family business internationally, work for a multinational company, or pursue higher education, like a Ph.D.

7. Demonstrate your enthusiasm for the university

It is an important section in which students can persuade a university that they are a good fit for their applicant’s profile and for their university. Students should discuss course curricula, research projects, faculty names, and college-specific events that will help them advance their careers. Before writing, do research on your preferred university, course, and subject area. This will help you avoid generalizations and make you appear knowledgeable.

8. Create an effective conclusion for SOP

 This section should summarize students’ willingness and ability to enroll in the selected course. Since this is the conclusion paragraph, students should appear focused and ready to face any problems. It should also show that they are motivated to achieve their objectives. They will undoubtedly make a significant contribution to the global industrial sector with the assistance of their chosen degree and university.

9. Review your SOP with the help of a professional

It is critical to re-analyse and check your work. Re-analyzing will aid in the correction of the flow, vocabulary, sentence creation errors, long sentences, and various grammar issues. Get a second opinion, which could be from a professor, a senior, or a SOP professional. Before submitting your work, double-check your proofreading. As a result, students can make a variety of changes without deviating from the format. Finally, double-check the SOP for spacing issues and save it for use in the application process.

What not to write in an SOP?

  • Don’t boast about your accomplishments, especially your academic and extracurricular activities. Put it another way, write about how that particular accomplishment helped and motivated you.
  • Since language is an important factor, avoid using slang (Yeah!, Chuck, etc.). Also, avoid using abbreviations for words like “you,” “are,” and so on. However, keep your vocabulary under control. Don’t hold back on using nice GRE words. Check that the word’s usage makes sense.
  • We enjoy copying and pasting, but this is not the place for it. You can use a sample statement of purpose, but it would be more appealing if you came up with creative and unique statements.


   The SOP of students is a major deciding factor in admission. It assists the admissions committee in determining students’ life perspectives, career goals, opinions, subject knowledge, and perspective. A well-written statement of purpose reflects the character and personality of students at universities. It is an opportunity for students to explain to the committee why they are hoping to take the course and why they should be chosen over other candidates.

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